In response to reports from psychologists that they could not purchase personal protective equipment (PPE) from Amazon, APA CEO Arthur C. Evans, Jr., PhD, wrote to Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos (PDF, 56KB) to resolve the situation. Evans asked that psychologists be recognized as essential healthcare professionals and be able to purchase PPE through Amazon Business. Evans stated, “… clinical psychologists work in all healthcare treatment settings, directing and delivering the provision of essential mental health services including psychotherapy, psychological and neuropsychological testing, and health behavior assessment and intervention services. The work that psychologists do is critically important during the COVID-19 public health emergency.”
APA’s advocacy letter reiterated that in March, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security defined psychologists as “essential critical infrastructure workers” (PDF, 526KB) during the COVID-19 pandemic to promote community and national resilience.
APA’s chief advocacy officer, Katherine McGuire, and chief of professional practice, Jared Skillings, PhD, also met with Amazon senior leaders. Within 24 hours of that meeting, Amazon provided assurance that all licensed psychologists, including applied psychologists, would be able to purchase PPE and safety equipment through Amazon’s COVID-19 Supplies store. In addition, Amazon notified their registration team and customer service team to prepare for the psychologists who will apply.